ISLAMABAD: Over 200 daily wage teachers of different model colleges on Monday staged a sit-in in front of the National Press Club (NPC) against the delay in regularisation of their services and non-payment of salaries.
The protesters, which included a large number of female teachers, remained outside the press club from 9am till 6pm. Before dispersing in the evening they announced that they would continue their protest on Tuesday as well.
Tariq Ismael, a daily wage teacher, told Dawn that despite assurances by the former government a large number of teachers had not been regularised.
“I am working on a meagre salary of Rs9,000 in the hope that one day I will be regularised and will benefit from the facilities extended to a permanent teacher,” he said.
“In May 2013, daily wage teachers filed a case in the Islamabad High Court (IHC) which is still pending,” Mr Ismael said.
Another teacher, Ehsaan Bangash, said the daily wage teachers in Islamabad College for Boys (ICB) G-6/3, Islamabad Model College for Boys (IMCB) F-11/3 and Islamabad Model College for Girls (IMCG) I-10/4 have not received their salaries since March due to unavailability of funds.
“Now the Capital Administration and Development Division (CADD) is saying that the Accountant General of Pakistan Revenue (AGPR) will release their salaries by May,” Mr Bangash said.
“But we are still uncertain because the AGPR deals with permanent employees only,” he said.
A female teacher, Saima Shafiq, said it was not easy to sit on the road in this scorching heat but they had no option but to protest in the hope that their voice would be heard by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
“We demand that all daily wage teachers should be regularised immediately as without peace of mind we cannot concentrate on our duties,” she said.
Earlier, Director Model Colleges in the Federal Directorate of Education (FDE) Saeedullah Khan visited the sit-in and assured the protesters that their salaries would be released in the next 48 hours.
Mr Khan also said the FDE had been making efforts to get the teachers regularised and hopefully the issue would be resolved soon.Former Federal Minister J. Salik, representatives of model colleges and federal government colleges associations also visited the protest to express solidarity with the teachers.
Member National Assembly (MNA) from Islamabad Asad Umar had also promised to join the protesting teachers but he did not turn up.
Senate body shows concern
The Senate Standing Committee on Cabinet Secretariat on Monday expressed its annoyance over the low wages of daily wage teachers working in government institutions.
Senator Kalsoom Parveen said it was an irony that the builders of the nation were getting just a few thousand rupees.
The committee instructed CADD to prepare a seniority list of the daily wage teachers and regularise them as early as possible.
The committee was informed that there were 9,428 teachers for over 200,000 students – 94,000 boys and 105,000 girls – in 422 educational institutions of the federal capital.